DETROIT (WWJ) – An Inkster man will serve up to 20 years in prison after he ran down a group of pedestrians, killing one of them, in Midtown Detroit.
Authorities said Deandre Merkie Simmons, 42, on June 8 drove his pickup truck on the wrong side of Canfield, near Third St. and Cass Ave. — striking three people as they were crossing the street in front of the Shinola store.
John McDaniels, Jr., a 73-year-old resident of South Lyon, died of his injuries. A 65-year-old Milford woman and a 65-year-old Milford man were hospitalized with serious injuries.
According to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, Simmons pleaded guilty to one count of Reckless Driving Causing Death, two counts of Driving While License Suspended Causing Death, three counts of Reckless Driving Causing Serious Injury and four counts of Driving While License Suspended Causing Serious Injury.
On Monday, Wayne County 3rd Circuit Court Judge Catherine Heise sentenced Simmons to four to 15 years in prison for counts one and two, and two to five years in prison for counts three and four.
Police had initially said Simmons was on drugs at the time of the crash, but charges related to driving under the influence were dismissed during a preliminary hearing in July.
Wayne State University police have said there were a group of Tesla vehicles parked on the street at the time of the crash and the victims were looking at the cars on display.